My grandparents have been married for
70 years. They're both in their 90's now and considering the change and
struggle the world has seen in that time, it's hard to imagine the life
they've shared. My grandmother Rose was born in Puerto Rico in 1920 but
raised in Spanish Harlem, New York. My grandfather Eugene was born in
1921 and brought up in a strict Irish Catholic family in Hells Kitchen,
New York. Both fell in love during a bygone era that few in my
generation have the appropriate appreciation for. It's a fairy tale
romance that lends authenticity to American classics like Broadway's West Side Story and Ben E. King's Spanish Harlem.
I was recently sorting through old things of theirs and came upon a red
album full of original photographs. Some timeless images of old New
York neighbors, honored wartime buddies, quaint backyard BBQ's, and an
undying love that still burns strong.